Saturday, February 19, 2011
Well, I might not be able to kick it with the NBA All Stars this weekend, but last week it was a completely different story. My only goal was to go to the Beverly Hilton and say hi to Whitney. I also wanted to A) Take a photo with her (why must we fans always need a picture lol) and B) Give her a DVD I made along with inscribed dog chain that featured a picture of Whitney and her dad, John Houston. I don't know why God placed it on my heart to update this DVD I did for her, but he did. It took so much time. After hours and hours of working I kept asking myself, now why I am doing this again? Then I re-watched Oprah's Legends Ball on Youtube and her comment on the reason she gave everyone expensive diamond earrings really resonated with me. It helped me understand why I was giving Whitney Houston anything at all. She said, "I know that it was an extravagant gift, but there isn't a gift that I could have given that would have said how much your life has meant to my life. I know it was extravagant, yet it still wasn't enough." When I heard Oprah say that line it was clear to me why I was spending so much time updating this video for Whitney and her daughter. Whitney's life has meant so much to mine. Her music has inspired me through the best of times and comforted me through the worst. How do you thank someone you really don't know for being such a constant positive in your life? You make them a DVD! Well, at least that is what I did. I originally made the video back in 2002 when Bobbi Kristina was just a little girl. Now she is this sweet, God-fearing, down-to-earth, loves her family, but takes no mess from anybody young lady, who tweets up a storm. I guess 9 years later there will be some changes. I sent it to Whitney, not knowing if she really ever got it, or if she get it, did she ever watch it? Oprah walked around with the movie 'Precious' in her purse for months before actually taking the time to watch it. after she watched it she end up doing everything she could to support it, including becoming a producer on the project. But the key is that she had to watch it to be moved to do anything. So I have no real knowledge if Whitney ever really saw what I sent.
Periodically, I have sent Whitney something once a year just to say hello or Happy Birthday. I love Whitney and have been blessed many times to tell her so. This is just my way of reaching out and doing something thoughtful for her that I pray makes her smile. Since the time we met on MTV's Fanatic back in 1998, Whitney has always been kind to me. Each encounter we've had over the years she has greeted me like an old friend. And I have to say, it's been a wonderful feeling to be recognized by your favorite singer of all time. She even told Ray J that we go way back! I mean we do go way back. But c'mom son, for Whitney to say it, is bananas! I will never forget how she introduced me to him, "Let me introduce you to my friend Ray." Whitney introducing ME to Ray J- as in R&B artist, Reality Star, Brandy's little brother Ray J. Now that was cool. I'll do one better. How about ME introducing my best friend, Tam to Whitney (she's a big Whitney fan too)! I think that was even cooler. Dag Nabit, I get so sidetracked talking about Whitney! Back to the story.
The day of the gala my only plan included prayer, positive thinking, and booking a hotel room at the Beverly Hilton hotel. It was pricey, but worth it. Normally, I set out for adventures like this with Tam, but she flew to Memphis for her niece's 8 yr. old birthday party. How cool is that? I don't remember any of my aunts flying home to see me for my birthday. I thought that was pretty special. She hung out with a bunch of little girls struck with Justin Bieber Fever! I was left to enjoy all of the grown folk shenanigans that was going to take place on my own. When I arrived at the hotel the energy for the gala later on was palpable. I checked in my room, unpacked my bag, and headed down to the lobby to survey the scene. My goal was only to see Whitney, so anything else that went down was a bonus. Let's just say I had a lot of bonuses that night!
I did immediately see some of Whitney's entourage meandering around. Only a real fan would have even recognized them. It was going to be a long night so I left them alone. We would meet again. As I walked around the hotel I saw all of the preparations being finalized for the party later. It is always cool to see things before everyone arrives. Even though it's quiet and peaceful you can still feel the excitement in the air. I took a few photos of the hotel while I strolled around and looked.
As time went by the place became star-studded! Limos and SUV's start arriving and within no time the Beverly Hilton was packed. There were more stars than fans, which is always so much fun. I walked around like I had a VIP badge, which of course I did not. I promise you could not tell though. Walk tall and people will treat you like you are tall. In keeping a sharp eye out for Whitney I ran smack dab into her nephew, Gary Michael or Michael Gary. I can't remember which name is first. He was with Whitney's Godson Nick Gordon. They were both cuties, but not cute enough to miss my moment with Whitney. While I was talking to them guess who walked right by me. Yep, how'd you know? It was Whitney. All I heard was a few fans say "O-M-G I just saw
Whitney Houston." I quickly turned and caught a glimpse of Whitney's black sequins dress out of the corner of my eye. But yeah you know it, it was too late. Before I could turn around she was on the elevator and gone. Wow. Here I am talking to Whitney's family and I miss Whitney. Figures. I'm glad they were nice. I showed them the dog chain I got for Whitney and they both said she would love it. I do a radio podcast so they both agreed to do a interview for my show. Never happened, but I'm still open to do it in the future if you're reading this guys.
I was sick over missing Whitney, but I shook it off and figured I would see her later, and moved on. As the night progressed I spotted Miki Howard and Chaka Khan outside having a cigarette. They were chopping it up laughing, and what not. It was so cool being 2 feet away from two great singers. They both were beautiful! I know that Chaka can appear huge on TV, but in person she is not. I promise you, TV makes you look so much bigger than you are in real life. Pictures can lie too. Now wonder people in Hollywood are always on diets. Seeing Miki Howard was so cool. I used to play her song "Come Share My Love" for hours on end. I still love that song! And Chaka, I mean who doesn't love Chaka Khan? I waited until they were finished smoking and asked them for photos. I did have my camera, but since I was solo I had to use my ipod to take the pic. It's a bit grainy but hey I'll take it. I asked Miki Howard was she invited to the event. She said no, she was just hanging out like me. Ha! Who knew?! Seems like my plan or lack there of works for others too. Only difference is she gets to have a cigarette with Chaka Khan. Sidebar: Why do all the best singers smoke? I wonder could I sing better, if I smoked cigarettes? Things that make you go Hmmm...
After the Miki Chaka moment I turned to my left, and there was Tyrese, and Vin Diesel walking in the door. Are you serious? Man, if you turned your head you will miss someone, literally! I wasn't able to ask them for a photo because I was interviewing Kelly Price. And how do you do that? Uh excuse me Miss Grammy nominated, powerhouse diva, and nice person for giving me this interview, uh can you hold on or stay right here while I go and get pictures with uh some bigger named stars. Lol! No, I don't think that would have went over well at all. I was grateful that Kelly Price even gave me an interview. I so was not expecting it. But I was prepared if it went down. It was on the fly, but it happened. I really wished she would have won the grammy for "Tired." Next time Kelly! I told her that I felt like it was her time. Maybe it was just my time to meet her. Ya think? You can hear my interview with her on my upcoming podcast about the 53rd Annual Grammy Awards.
Did you notice that in all my pics everyone is looking down. That's how short I am. But know this, I have a TALL spirit. Lol!! Reminds me off a tweet I saw that said, "Katt, stand up! Bitch, I am standing up." Yeah, that sounds like me. Well after my interview with Kelly Price I saw Usher quickly slide in. Wow. There were folks everywhere. Since I was unable to rub up next to Usher I saw gospel great Bebe Winans and asked for a photo. Can I just take a moment to say, how nice Bebe was. I wish more stars were kind like him. You really can feel the difference when people take the time to extend kindness. I want to do that whether I become a star or not. Makes such an impact on people. It did on me.
This guy was madd cool, but for the life of me I could not think of his name. I told him, I know you somebody so let't take this pic. I still am not quite sure who that somebody is. I think it is Romany Malco, the break out star from the movie 40 year old Virgin also currently on ABC's No Ordinary Family. Take a look at the two photos and tell me what you think. I am still somewhat clueless. But that's Hollywood for you. So many stars in one place you can't even recognize them. Crazy but true.
I did see Gayle King tipping her way out and I had to walk with her and talk with her to get my photo. This time I used my camera. Bad move. With my ipod I can see what I'm actually taking. It has the ability to turn the camera around. So, even though I'm short and horrible at taking pictures I can assure that we, me, you are all at least in the frame. My digital camera did not have this capability ( I need one that does, Samsung here I come) but instead of switching it up I used my same technique. Horrible outcome everyone. I was only able to get all of me, and Gayle's chin. Sometimes you do need another person.
Just in case you wanted to see what Gayle looked like that night, here you go. As you will notice above. You won't recognize her at all from my photo.
Here are some stars I had no idea was even at the event. That's how many people were there.
I was all over the place. I took photos with Sway from MTV, Tracy Ullman, and the Tonight Show Band Director, Ricky Minor. Sway was working when I first approached him, then later he came over to me and said let's do this! How cool, right?!
When I took a photo with Tracy Ullman I got right in next to her and she was like "Oh, well, um ok." Lol at the British. I don't think she was expecting me to get that close to her. But C'mon son who wants a picture with somebody and their standing 2 feet away from them?! Ha! I guess, Tracy Ullman would! Next time, Tracy, Next time!
Whitney fans know that Ricky Minor started out with Whitney, then blew up. He was behind all of the arrangements on American Idol for the past 9 years, and every other great event that rocked on TV.
After all of my hob knobbing I was Tired (S/O to Kelly Price)! One of my prayers the night before was that I get an invite to the event someway. The last time I was at this affair was in 2009 and when I saw Whitney the next day I told her I had to hear her sing from the hallway. Now how I was going to get in was not my business. I left that up to God. And let me tell you. He never disappoints. Never. When I plopped down in one of the chairs in the lobby, I looked directly in front of me and this guy was sitting down wearing the same tired look as me. I said oh my goodness I am so tired. He said, "Me too!" We went back and forth about who was more tired without ever introducing ourselves. Then out of nowhere (but you and I know it was from God, just so we're clear) he goes you want to see the performances. I said "uh, yes!" He said, "Just go in the media room and sit down and watch them. He pointed out the door to me. I said, "I don't have any credentials or anything." He said, "Just walk in there like you belong." You don't have to tell me twice! And that ladies and gentlemen is how I got to see Whitney,R. Kelly, Jennifer Hudson, and Cee Lo perform that night. And because I never was a selfish person I have posted all of the performances below for your viewing pleasure. I hear you saying thank you! Don't thank me. Thank God!
Doesn't it seem like I took a photo with everyone but the person I came to see? The closest I got to Whitney that night was a photo with her brother Gary Houston
But after a night like this how could I be sad? I wasn't! Plus, remember, I was staying at the hotel, and so was Whitney, so all was not lost. I truly believe in not giving up 5 minutes before the miracle. A quote I borrowed from author and spiritual Guru Iyanla Vanzant. So, I spoke to a few more folks that night including this group, who all included engineers. And This guy below in particular told me he engineered the remix to Chris Brown's song Deuces. What?! I love that joint. He told me he met Chris Brown in an elevator and that's how he got on. He had a 30 second elevator pitch. He also told me they called him Kraft singles. I asked him why? He said because he Krafts singles! Bwahahahah! White cheddar was fun to meet.
They all were fun. How did I meet them? I was making fun of the signs they were doing as they took photos. They were reppin some school in Virginia, but it just look like they were putting scientific gang signs, or double peace signs. I thought it was pretty funny and they had a good sense of humor about it. So we all talked and laughed for a strong 15 minutes. Never know who you're gonna meet. They could be the Grammy Winners of tomorrow!
I took a shot of this guy rollin around the Beverly Hilton on this doohickey. That bad boy had gold rims too. Oh how hip hop has taken over mainstream. It wasn't until I posted it on Facebook did I find out who it was Noel Lee, who owns Monster cable. I should have asked him for a job! What was I thinking? I could have at least asked for some Beats by Dr. Dre headphones!
Well, I did ask this guy about a job. His name is Stephen Hill and is a BET executive. I got nothing. My bar is set higher anyway. I'm headed to OWN!
Around 3AM, I headed to my room and called it a night. I thought I remembered turning on the TV to soothe me to sleep. But, er uhm, I don't think that was needed. I was out as soon as my head hit the pillow.
The next morning I got packed up, checked out, and proceeded to wait in the lobby. I was prepared to wait all day to say "Hey" to Whitney. I should have probably been thanking her. Because meeting her was my only real goal I was open to anything happening. And everything happened. If I had seen Whitney first I would have not hung out and experienced as much as I did. God always knows. After about 20 minutes in the lobby I start to see Whitney's entourage coming down to check out. I had already introduced myself to her bodyguard Ray the night before. He's one of the few Whitney peeps I never met. I made sure to he would know I was not a crazy threat. I even showed him what I was giving to Whitney, so all would be cool. There ARE some legitimate crazies out there. And I don't want to be considered one of them.
I thought I would have to wait all day for Whitney to come down, so I took my laptop out and proceeded to stay awhile. To my surprise after only 20 minutes I started to see member of Whitney's entourage come down to check out. Yes! I thought. I can go home and get some more sleep. The bodyguard told me she would be down soon. SO I packed up my computer and took out the dog chain and DVD I had to give her. About 15 minutes later Whitney and Bobbi Kristina came down. She saw me and came over to me. I told her about what I had to give her and she loved it. We took a photo and that was it. Next thing I heard was people saying "That's Whitney Houston!" But by then she had made it to her SUV, and I was walking by her waving and saying bye to Whitney. "Bye, Love" she said. Mission accomplished. Next stop, Joe Peeps to get two slices of pizza.
This pizza looks as good as it tasted! I know to some this looks like a heart attack waiting to happen, especially when you have high blood pressure like I do. Thank God, I don't eat like this everyday. I love the pizza from this place so much, that one time I tried to send my mom one in the mail. Wasn't a good idea, but that's how good it is. She loves Joe Peeps too. What I love most about Joe Peeps is the fact I never have to get a whole pizza. Sometimes, you really only want a slice! Trust me, this is the place to go.
It's cheap, it's fresh, and most of all it tastes good! If you're in LA go to the corner of Magnolia and Whittsett. You'll see Joe Peeps on the corner. Right across from Pizza Hut. Don't cross the street to pizza hut. I promise, you won't be sorry.
After I came home and ate my pizza I was so exhausted. I had a bunch of fun and now all I wanted was sleep. By the time the Grammy's came on I only had enough energy to press record on the DVR. It's a week later and I still haven't seen the whole show. When I do you will know it, because I will post my Grammy podcast. Now that I have told you everything that happened last weekend, let me make some memories for this weekend. In Keshia Cole's Mama Voice....Holla!
Last weekend was The Grammy's and this week is All-Star weekend. You must keep it moving in LA. There is always something going on. The events here never stop. I heard everybody from Diddy to Nicki Minaj is having a party during All Star. So funny, even though they already have money they want our $75 to make more money. When they say the rich get richer, they were not lying. Why would you pay $200 to go to a Kobe Bryant party? I know, I know because it's a Kobe Bryant party. But do you really think you are going to kick it with Kobe? You will only be in a building with Kobe. We would get more of our money's worth to save that money to put on a Laker ticket. At least then you will be guaranteed to actually see Kobe. But I'm not a hater so if you can afford it, go and have fun. I definitely would kick it somewhere if I could. Right now, I am just thankful for cable to watch the game and the internet to see what I missed!
Sunday, February 6, 2011
Superbowl 2011 Packers 31, Steelers 25
My nephew was pulling for the Packers. He's a winner and now so are they! Congrats Packers!
Thursday, February 3, 2011
I despise Bullies. So when I heard about Nadin Khoury recently I was sickened by what bullies did to him. He’s a beautiful 13-year old who was recently jumped by a group of seven teenagers between the ages of 13-17. They call this wolf pack mentality. It usually takes a group to make them all feel strong. Nadin had been been jumped before and his parents tried to tell the school, but like in most cases the school did nothing. Even after all the news about kids committing suicide here Nadin was being bullied, and did the right thing by telling. Still no one, but his parents and sister seemed to care. I believe that because nothing was done the bullies got cocky and went a step further. They taped the bullying with a cell phone and you guessed it posted it to youtube. I know right, they got some nerve. But thank God for their ignorance because the video is now evidence of what they did. The video of him getting hung on a fence made it’s way out and action had to be taken. The kids have now been arrested and should be facing some stiff punishment. Nadin and his parents have been doing some television interviews and they were recently on “The View.” This video is a tear-jerker and a must-watch. The View found out Nadin was an Eagles fan and they brought in Jamaal Jackson, Todd Herremans and DeSean Jackson to surprise him. I was in tears watching this. You will be too. Watch Nadin's face when they come out and I dare you not to get misty eyed. Big ups to the athletes for taking some time out of their schedule. You just made Nadin's day, and mine. My favorite part is when Jamaal takes off his shirt and signs it right there on the TV couch. Amazing.
Wednesday, February 2, 2011
How cute is this couple? Watching them made me feel good. What I love most about them is that they are dancing like no one is watching. This is how we all should live our lives. Dance on ya'll! I also recognize a few of Whitney's arm moves from her video to this song. Loves it!